Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey said his company’s “communication” was “unacceptable” to justify the mass censorship of a New York Post story on Democratic nominee Joe Biden and his son Hunter.
On Wednesday night, Dorsey addressed critics who railed against Twitter’s unprecedented decision to stop users from circulating the story, which purported to show Hunter Biden facilitated communications between his father and then-Vice President Joe Biden and Vadym Pozharskyi, who served as an adviser to the board of Ukrainian energy firm Burisma that the younger Biden was once on.
“Our communication around our actions on the @nypost article was not great. And blocking URL sharing via tweet or DM with zero context as to why we’re blocking: unacceptable,” Dorsey tweeted.
— jack (@jack) October 14, 2020
Twitter released a statement on social media, clarifying why it took the action and saying the report contained private information and “hacked materials.”
“We want to provide much needed clarity around the actions we’ve taken with respect to two NY Post articles that were first Tweeted this morning. The images contained in the articles include personal and private information — like email addresses and phone numbers — which violate our rules. As noted this morning, we also currently view materials included in the articles as violations of our Hacked Materials Policy. Commentary on or discussion about hacked materials, such as articles that cover them but do not include or link to the materials themselves, aren’t a violation of this policy. Our policy only covers links to or images of hacked material themselves,” Twitter said in a thread.
“The policy, established in 2018, prohibits the use of our service to distribute content obtained without authorization. We don’t want to incentivize hacking by allowing Twitter to be used as distribution for possibly illegally obtained materials. We know we have more work to do to provide clarity in our product when we enforce our rules in this manner. We should provide additional clarity and context when preventing the Tweeting or DMing of URLs that violate our policies. We recognize that Twitter is just one of many places where people can find information online, and the Twitter Rules are intended to protect the conversation on our service, and to add context to people’s experience where we can,” the statement continued.
We want to provide much needed clarity around the actions we’ve taken with respect to two NY Post articles that were first Tweeted this morning.
— Twitter Safety (@TwitterSafety) October 14, 2020
Missouri Republican Sen. Josh Hawley later criticized Dorsey’s statement, saying Twitter’s action constituted “potential violations of election law.”
.@Twitter @jack this is not nearly good enough. In fact, it’s a joke. It’s downright insulting. I will ask you – and @Facebook – to give an explanation UNDER OATH to the Senate subcommittee I chair. These are potential violations of election law, and that’s a crime https://t.co/Rylva8UJv9
— Josh Hawley (@HawleyMO) October 15, 2020
Other critics blasted Dorsey’s statement, saying the actions, not the communication, were unwarranted.
What if your actions were garbage, not just your communications? https://t.co/7rQPSLpOC6
— Ben Shapiro (@benshapiro) October 15, 2020
Tonight Twitter trying to provide 'context' to its censorship of New York Post story about Hunter and Joe Biden. https://t.co/ufVP14ppYG
— Byron York (@ByronYork) October 15, 2020
Just reported this tweet for election interference https://t.co/UVF4J2vGXN
— Mollie (@MZHemingway) October 15, 2020
SUBPOENA THIS MAN IMMEDIATELY 👇🏻👇🏻👇🏻 https://t.co/XJN2ZoouBV
— Dan Bongino (@dbongino) October 15, 2020
Author: Anthony Leonardi
Source: Washington Examiner: Twitter CEO says company communication to justify mass censorship of New York Post Biden story ‘unacceptable’